The Year of Goodbyes: A true story of friendship, family, and farewells

 
0.0
 
4.0 (1)
1528 0
The Year of Goodbyes: A true story of friendship, family, and farewells
Author(s)
Publisher
Age Range
10+
Release Date
March 16, 2010
ISBN
1423129016
Buy This Book
      
This book tells the true story of what happened to a 12-year-old girl named Jutta (Debbie Levy’s mother) in 1938. Actual entries in a posiealbum (autograph book) serve as stepping stones in a crucial year in history, when people of Jewish ancestry in Germany and Austria were systematically stripped of their rights, subjected to violence, and arrested without cause. Jutta was one of the lucky ones who escaped to America before the rising tide of violence erupted into World War II and the tragedy of the Holocaust. Remembrances from Jutta's friends and relatives introduce chapters, written in verse form, that describe her experiences—many of them typical of any teenager anywhere—and report some of the history of the era. Debbie wrote these verses in consultation with her mother to reflect her voice, feelings, and thoughts as she was living through this memorable year. The book also includes excerpts from Jutta’s diary. Together the poesie writings, verses and diary entries reflect a year of change and chance, confusion and cruelty. Most of all, they describe a year of goodbyes.

User reviews

1 reviews

Already have an account? or Create an account
Saying Goodbye to a Former Life
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Writing Style 
 
4.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable)  
 
0.0
Learning Value 
 
0.0
Reader reviewed by Julie M. Prince

The Year of Goodbyes by Debbie Levy gives us a glimpse of pre-WWII Germany through the eyes of 12-year-old Jutta. The Nazis are making Juttas normal life in Hamburg miserable with all of the new rules theyre imposing on Jews. Her father has even had to close up his business because he, as a Jew, isnt good enough to run it. His full-time job has become finding a way for his family to flee their home and get to the distant U.S. to stay with relatives that Juttas never even met.

In an effort to maintain some sense of normalcy, Jutta and her friends keep posiealbums (poetry albums) in which they share words of wisdom and remembrance.

Juttas album from the year she left home is featured in this fantastic book, along with some of her diary entries. Juttas own daughter, author Debbie Levy, does a brilliant job of narrating through the story and keeping the significant parts from becoming buried in this wealth of a walk down memory lane.

Aside from reading the entries by various Jewish friends and relatives, I found the recorded thoughts about what was happening around Jutta to be most interesting--the way the fears grew from tiny seeds of discontent to huge, tangled weeds of desperation.

Escape from Germany was necessary to live, but difficult to achieve, and the story of Jutta's family is a heartwrenching and triumphant one. Bittersweet and poignant. The author does it justice.
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 0 0
Powered by JReviews

FEATURED GIVEAWAYS

Latest Book Listings Added

Thomas Edison
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Learn about the life of Thomas Edison in this early...
Pete the Cat: 5-Minute Bedtime Stories: Includes 12 Cozy Stories!
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Join Pete the Cat for 12 groovy, cozy stories perfect...
Sabina: In the Eye of the Storm
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
As in Anne Frank's "Diary of a Young Girl" and...
Literally: Amazing Words and Where They Come From
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
A stunning non-fiction picture book about the origins of the...
Ty's Travels: All Aboard!
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Join Ty on his imaginative adventures in Ty's Travels: All...
Cuddle Close, Little Koala
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
A reassuring bedtime story about the special bond between a...
We Are Together
 
3.5
 
0.0 (0)
The power of love and friendship is celebrated in this...
Rage and Ruin (The Harbinger, #2)
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Half-angel Trinity and her bonded gargoyle protector, Zayne, have been...
Diamond City (Diamond City, #1)
 
3.3
 
0.0 (0)
"A thrilling adventure, through a vibrant city as alive as...
Shadow of the Batgirl
 
4.7
 
0.0 (0)
Cassandra Cain, teenage assassin, isn't exactly Batgirl material...yet. Will she...
Of Ice and Shadows
 
3.7
 
0.0 (0)
The long-awaited sequel to Of Fire and Stars—in which Mare...
Agnes at the End of the World
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
The Handmaid's Tale meets Wilder Girls in this genre-defying novel...
My Love is All Around
 
4.5
 
0.0 (0)
Mommy Bear shows Baby Bear how love is all around...
I'm not a Mouse!
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
Olivia really doesn't like her nickname - mostly because it...
My Panda Sweater
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
The other kids may laugh, but I always feel safe...
One Day on our Blue Planet... In the Outback
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
From breakfast to dinner, dusk to dawn, children will love...

Latest Member Reviews

Pete the Cat: 5-Minute Bedtime Stories: Includes 12 Cozy Stories!
 
5.0
"'Pete the Cat 5-Minute Bedtime Stories' by Kimberly and James Dean is an adorable storybook that any lover of children's..."
Ty's Travels: All Aboard!
 
5.0
"'Ty's Travels: All Aboard!' by Kelly Starling Lyons, pictures by Nina Mata, is an adorable story of Ty and his..."
Cuddle Close, Little Koala
 
4.0
"CUDDLE CLOSE, LITTLE KOALA is a sweet story of the special connection between mother and child. Little Koala is lost..."
We Are Together
 
3.5
"WE ARE TOGETHER is a book about activism and teamwork. In the form of a rhyming poem, the book stresses..."
My Love is All Around
 
4.5
"MY LOVE IS ALL AROUND is a sweet book about love between parent and child and the many ways in..."
I'm not a Mouse!
 
4.0
"I'M NOT A MOUSE! is a cute picture book about nicknames. Olivia's mother always calls her mouse, and she doesn't..."
My Panda Sweater
 
5.0
"MY PANDA SWEATER is a lovely book about the way that clothes can affect us. A young girl loves her..."
One Day on our Blue Planet... In the Outback
 
4.0
"ONE DAY ON OUR BLUE PLANET... IN THE OUTBACK is a picture book that follows a red kangaroo joey through..."
Mrs Bibi's Elephant
 
5.0
"MRS BIBI'S ELEPHANT is a sweet story about the special place we have in our hearts for our pets. Mrs...."
Artemis Fowl: Guide to the World of Fairies
 
4.0
""Written" by dwarf Nord Diggums with contributions from experts in the field of magical creatures such as Professor Ivana Therey..."
Super Puzzletastic Mysteries: Short Stories for Young Sleuths from Mystery Writers of America
 
5.0
"Short story collections are hard to review, especially when one includes so many fantastic authors! My students will be glad..."
Daniela and the Pirate Girls
 
3.5
"DANIELA AND THE PIRATE GIRLS is a fun high-seas adventure about helping others and making new friends. Daniela is the..."
Child of Galaxies
 
4.0
"CHILD OF GALAXIES is a lovely poem about life and the broad meaning of it all. The poem begins by..."
Shy Ones
 
5.0
"SHY ONES is a sweet look at friendship and the people (or sea creatures) who are shy. The story is..."
Once Upon an Eid
 
5.0
"This collection has a wide variety of stories about different aspects of Eid, and is particularly poignant during this time..."
Slamdown Town
 
4.0
"Ollie is in 6th grade and is small for his age. His older brother, Hollis, is in 8th, and has..."
Ragweed and Poppy
 
3.5
"RAGWEED AND POPPY is an interesting middle grade novel that follows Ragweed, a mouse who is on a journey. Ragweed..."
The Right Place
 
3.5
"THE RIGHT PLACE is a picture book that stresses the importance of friends and home. Squirrel wakes up after a..."
I'm Sorry!
 
5.0
"I'M SORRY! is a fantastic picture book about apologizing and compromise. Swoop and Scribble are an owl and squirrel who..."
It's Impossible!
 
4.0
"IT'S IMPOSSIBLE! is a delightful road trip picture book that asserts things are only impossible if you say that they..."